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Sound, heat and light: photoacoustic and photothermal detection of gases

Oscar Oehler (Institute of Quantum Electronics, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich)

Sensor Review

ISSN: 0260-2288

Article publication date: 1 September 1995


Describes some of the current research into infrared spectroscopic gas detection, outlining the need to produce a low cost device, whilst fulfilling the required properties of high reliability, selectivity and sensitivity. Describes and compares the photoacoustic and photothermal methods of gas detection and states that both methods outperform surface sensitive devices with respect to reliability. Concludes that the variety of options—a choice of acoustic decoupling methods and a choice of an optical filter of every wavelength required to suit the gas—offers a wide field of application including process control, atmospheric control, environmental monitoring and heat, ventilation and air conditioning.



Oehler, O. (1995), "Sound, heat and light: photoacoustic and photothermal detection of gases", Sensor Review, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 14-16.




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